Bradley Jacks

Bradley Jacks

West Indies Women head coach Courtney Walsh believes his most difficult task preparing for next year's ICC Women's Cricket World Cup, will be keeping his players focused and ready for the task at hand following the cancellation of the World Cup qualifiers in Zimbabwe.

The players returned home to their respective islands last weekend.

“That’s going to be a big challenge,” Walsh told the Antigua Observer.

“We had a break and didn’t get to play as much cricket as we wanted to play for them to get that exposure, so I don’t want to use the words ‘starting over again’, but it is going to be something similar where we are going to have to restart or reset and see how best we can get things going to have everybody clicking again.”

Following the cancellation of the qualifiers that were to be held between November 21 and December 5, the West Indies Women were forced to spend 11 days in quarantine in Oman.

West Indies Women had won their first match against Ireland Women by six wickets.

The 2022 ICC Women’s World Cup gets underway on March 4, 2022, with West Indies Women facing hosts New Zealand at the Bay Oval in Tauranga.

Kingston College is now the only team in schoolboy football this season to have a 100 per cent win record after beating Kingston Technical 3-0 for their second straight win as quarterfinal-round action in Manning Cup on Wednesday.

KC now leads Group 2 with six points from their two games.

Trailing Kingston College with three points from two games is Excelsior High School, which suffered a 2-1 defeat to Charlie Smith High that was getting their first win of the round.

Kingston Technical have yet to register a point after losing their first two games.

In Group 1 play on Tuesday, defending champions Jamaica College became the first team to advance to the semi-finals with a hard-fought 5-3 triumph over ST Andrew Technical High School (STATHS).

JC remains atop of the group with six points from their two games ahead of STATHS on three and Mona, also on three, after their crucial 2-0 win over St. Catherine High.

STATHS and Mona will do battle to see who joins JC in the semis.

Over in the DaCosta Cup, Dinthill Technical and Edwin Allen both got wins in Zone 1 action on Tuesday to set up a winner-take-all game to decide which of the two will advance to the semi-finals.

Dinthill defeated William Knibb 3-0 while Edwin Allen comfortably got by Christiana High 4-0 in a double-header at Manchester High.

Dinthill and Edwin Allen now both have six points from two matches with Dinthill currently ahead with a goal difference of 7 to 6 for Edwin Allen.

Mannings got their second win in Zone 2 with a 6-0 thrashing of Happy Grove at Drax Hall to remain atop the zone with six points from two games, two points ahead of Munro College, which outscored Vere Technical 4-3 and now have four points.

Happy Grove currently sits third with one point while Vere is fourth with none.

This is another scenario where the winner of the match between Mannings and Munro will advance to the semi-finals.

On Wednesday, Garvey Maceo and St Elizabeth Technical High School (STETHS) played to a 2-2 draw at Kirkvine while Frome hammered St. Thomas Technical 9-2 at Drax Hall in Zone 3 action.

This was Garvey Maceo’s first draw this season after winning their first eight matches.

STETHS and Garvey Maceo both have four points after two games with STETHS leading the zone on goal-difference of five against two for Garvey Maceo.

Frome is third with three points and St. Thomas Technical are fourth with none.

STETHS will play Frome in their final match while Garvey Maceo will play St. Thomas Technical.

At Manchester High, Clarendon College got a 2-0 win over Manchester to get their second straight win in Zone 4 and move to six points.

Pakistan achieved their highest ever successful run chase in T20 Internationals on Friday to complete a 3-0 series sweep of the West Indies in Karachi.

The home side made 208-3 from 18.5 overs to win by seven wickets.

The Pakistan opening pair of Mohammad Rizwan and Captain Babar Azam were comfortable throughout the first powerplay, taking 60 from the six overs with Rizwan on 32 and Babar on 27.

The pair raced to 98-0 after 10 overs with Rizwan bringing up a half century, his second of the series, on the last ball of the 10th over, and Babar on 46.

A boundary off the first ball of the 11th over bowled by Oshane Thomas made Mohammad Rizwan the first batsman ever to score 2000 T20 runs in a calendar year.

Babar achieved his 50 off 40 balls in the 12th over.

Rizwan and Babar brought up their 150-run partnership in the 15th over, which ended with Pakistan 158-0, still needing a further 50 from 30 balls to secure the sweep.

Babar was finally dismissed for 79 on the first ball of the 16th over bowled by Odean Smith.

Rizwan’s brilliant innings of 87 from 45 balls was finally ended in the 18th over when he was caught off the bowling of Dominic Drakes leaving Pakistan on 184-2 needing 24 off 16 balls to win.

Fakhar Zaman was the next Pakistan batsman to go, caught in the 19th over off the bowling Romario Shepherd for 12 to leave them 195-3.

Pakistan got to their target off 18.5 overs thanks to a late cameo of 21 from seven balls from Asif Ali.

Earlier, The West Indies won the toss and elected to bat, posting an excellent 207-3 thanks to 64 from captain Nicholas Pooran.

He was well supported by Shamarh Brooks who got 49 and Brandon King who scored 43.

Shahnawaz Dahani was Pakistan's best bowler on the day with 1-23 from his four overs.

Mohammad Rizwan was named Man of the Match and, after his brilliant 203 runs in three matches, was also named Man of the Series.

The West Indies have set Pakistan a target of 208 to win the third and final T20 in Karachi thanks to 64 from Captain Nicholas Pooran, his highest T20 International score.

Darren Bravo and Gudakesh Motie replaced Shai Hope and Akeal Hosein in the team for this game as Hope and Hosein were among the five additional members of the touring party to test positive for COVID-19 during PCR tests administered by the Pakistan Cricket Board on Wednesday.

With Hope missing, Shamarh Brooks joined regular opener, Brandon King, at the top of the innings. Together they brought up 50 in the fifth over with King going well on 37 and Brooks on 11.

King was dismissed on the last ball of the powerplay by Mohammed Wasim Jr for a well-played 43 to leave the team 66-1 after six overs.

Pooran came to the crease to join Brooks who was on 21.

Brooks narrowly missed out on a maiden T20 International 50 when he was dismissed for 49 by Shahnawaz Dahani in the 10th over to leave the West Indies 99-2.

After 15 overs the West indies were 153-2 with Pooran on 37 and Bravo on 16. Pooran brought up his fourth T20 International 50 in the 17th over off 31 balls.

He was eventually dismissed by Wasim Jr for 64 from 37 balls to leave his team 192-3 in the 18th over.

The 200 came up in the 19th over with Bravo on 30 and Rovman Powell on four.

The West Indies eventually ended their turn at the crease on 207-3 with Darren Bravo finishing not out on 34 from 27 balls and Rovman Powell not out on six.

Pacer Shahnawaz Dahani was the pick of the Pakistan bowlers with 1-23 from his four overs.

 

Reggae Boyz head coach Paul Hall says being reactive in transition and circulating the ball quickly will allow the team to get the forwards more involved.

Jamaica has struggled offensively in their World Cup Qualifying campaign so far only managing six goals in their first eight matches.

Hall says getting the ball forward is a priority but a balance needs to be found.

“What we need to think about is a balance with everything. We need to be able to get the ball forward, obviously. We’ve been using our full-backs to get forward and try to get crosses in,” Hall said.

One approach that the team has tried is to use a target-man approach with West Ham striker Michail Antonio. This was evident in the team’s 3-0 loss to Panama on September 5.

Panama countered that approach by putting two centre backs on Antonio and essentially taking him out of the game.

Hall, however, sees progress from his team where that style of play is concerned.

“I think you’re starting to see the team take shape. The ball is going up to Michail Antonio and it’s starting to hold. He’s starting to get some players to support him. We’re able to build a little bit more,” said Hall.

When questioned about the formation of the team going forward, Hall said his emphasis will be on style rather than position.

“I like to build play. I like to get midfield players on the half-turn, playing it forward. It’s not necessarily a formation, it’s a style so whether you play 3-4-3, 3-5-2, 4-3-3, the players all know what style they’re playing in. They want to be able to play one and two-touch, circulate the ball really quickly and make it difficult for people to get close to you so it’s really important that we get the work into the players,” he said.

Hall reiterated that while it will be difficult to implement all his proposed changes in the short term, there are still some general ways his team can improve their offensive output.

“Like I said, in the short term it’s quite difficult to make that happen straight away but there are things like reacting in the transition, winning the ball back quickly and getting the ball forward as much as we can in a controlled manner and really just being attacking-based. That for me is the way how you do it,” said Hall.

The Reggae Boyz have also conceded 10 goals in their eight matches and Hall says limiting mistakes on the ball is a way to solve the Reggae Boyz defensive woes.

“We have players who can keep the ball and receive the ball in those deep-lying midfield areas. We’ve just got to make sure we create situations for us to be able to not lose the ball and focus on that. Really focus on keeping the ball,” Hall said.

Jamaica currently sits sixth in the standings in the final round of CONCACAF World Cup Qualifying with seven points from their eight matches.

Each team has played eight games so far with Canada atop the standings with 16 points ahead of the USA with 15.

Mexico and Panama are third and fourth with 14 each while Costa Rica is fifth with nine.

The Reggae Boyz next take on Mexico on January 27, 2022.

The top three teams at the end of 14 matches will advance to the 2022 FIFA World Cup while the team in fourth will advance to a playoff against a team from the Oceania Football Confederation (OFC).

 

 

New Reggae Girlz Interim Coach Vin Blaine says defence must be the focus to bridge the gap between his team and the better teams in the CONCACAF region.

Speaking at his introductory press conference on Tuesday, Blaine was critical of the team’s defensive organization under the previous coaching staff.

“It’s a concern of mine, from I’ve been watching the team. What I’ve recognized is that defensively, we don’t have bad players but our organization was poor. If I was to criticize the past coaching staff, I would say our girls weren’t playing defensively well. That’s the area I want to sure up first,” said Blaine.

When asked about the fact that the Reggae Girlz have not fared well against the top teams, Blaine said that had more to do with team rotation rather than an inability to compete.

“The team that played against Costa Rica recently; they have not played against the USA, really, because what the coaching staff was doing before, was an assessment of the players, so you found that in the US game, he had a different squad, in the Nigeria game he had a different squad and in the Costa Rica game he had a different squad,” Blaine said.

He was referring to three friendlies the team played against Nigeria, Costa Rica and the USA. In those games, Jamaica won 1-0 against Nigeria, lost 4-0 to the USA and played to a 0-0 draw against Costa Rica. Blaine said the team should not be judged on those recent performances.

“It’s hard to judge how these present girls that have come from the USA and are playing professionally would have matched up,” said Blaine.

“It’s hard to say they did badly because in the past we played a Costa Rica team and I think we got something like 11-0 way back when. They’re still competitive.”

The Reggae Girlz will begin the first round of the CONCACAF Women’s Championship on February 17, 2022, against Bermuda.

They are in Group C alongside Grenada, The Dominican Republic, The Cayman Islands and Bermuda.

The tournament also serves as qualifying for the 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup in Australia and New Zealand from July 20 - August 20.

The Reggae Girlz are looking to qualify for their second straight FIFA Women’s World Cup.

Several Caribbean athletes were on show as the NCAA Indoor Track & Field season continued at the Kansas State Winter Invitational on December 11.

Bahamian Kyle Alcine, competing for Kansas State, won the high jump with a clearance of 2.05m.

Alcine, the silver medallist at the NACAC Under 23 Championships in Costa Rica earlier this year, finished ahead of Kansas State teammate Kamyren Garrett who also cleared 2.05 metres and Kaleb Clark of William Carey jumped 1.95 for third.

 Guyana’s Chantoba Bright, also representing Kansas State, was also a winner at the meet soaring out to 13.31 metres to win the triple jump.

Bright, who won a silver medal in the same event at the recently concluded Pan Am Junior Championships in Colombia, finished ahead of Allanah Lee of Oklahoma who jumped out to 12.28m and Nevagant Jones of William Carey who was third with 11.77m.

Meanwhile, Jamaica’s Fredricka McKenzie, competing for William Carey University, was second in the Women’s 60 metres in 7.52.

McKenzie is a former Edwin Allen High School student who narrowly missed out on an individual medal at Jamaica’s Boys and Girls High School Track & Field Championships or “Champs” on two separate occasions. She was fourth in the Girls Class One 200m in 2018 and a year later, fourth in the Girls Class One 100m.

The race was won by Wurrie Njadoe of Kansas State in 7.45 while her teammate Velecia Williams was third in 7.54.

Williams is a former Hydel High School student, who won silver medals in both the long and triple jump at the 2018 CARIFTA Games in The Bahamas.

Another Jamaican representing Kansas State, Taishia Pryce, finished fourth in 7.60.

Pryce, a former student at the St. Andrew Technical High School, also ran 39.35 to finish second in the Women’s 300m that Njadoe won in 38.42, a new meet record.

West Indies batting legend Brian Lara has been named a brand ambassador for Indian consumer deliverables company USHA International.

A Man of the Match performance from Shadab Khan helped Pakistan take an unassailable 2-0 series lead against the West Indies after a nine-run win in the second T20 International in Karachi today.

A late cameo of 28 from 12 balls by Shadab Khan propelled Pakistan to a respectable 172-8 off their 20 overs in the second T20 international against West Indies in Karachi Tuesday.

Pakistan won the toss and chose to bat first.

After getting to 14 without loss in the second over, Mohammed Rizwan and captain Babar Azam inexplicably went for a single that resulted in the Pakistan captain being run out for seven.

Rizwan and new batsman Fakhar Zaman attempted to steady the ship with a 19-run fourth over off Oshane Thomas to take the score to 38-1. The partnership was broken by Akeal Hosein, who had Zaman stumped for 10.

That wicket brought together, Rizwan and Haider Ali, who on Monday scored half-centuries in Pakistan's 63-run win over the visitors. Together, they guided the hosts to 50-2 at the end of the first powerplay.

Hosein bowled his four overs within the first seven and was once again excellent with figures of 1-16 to follow up his 1-19 performance Monday.

Pakistan were still only 2 wickets down at the halfway mark as Rizwan and Ali played sensibly to take the score to 73-2. The partnership was broken in the 12th over when Odean Smith had Rizwan caught at short cover for 38 from 30 balls. Smith got his second wicket of the day when Haider was caught at deep point by Shamarh Brooks for 31 on the last ball of the 14th over.

Hayden Walsh Jr got his first wicket in the very next over, removing Mohammad Nawaz, who was caught at deep mid-wicket for one.

Pakistan ended the 15th over 113-5 with Iftikhar Ahmed at the crease on 14 and Asif Ali on two.

Rovman Powell took an excellent catch off the bowling of Romario Shepherd to remove Ali for nine off the second ball of the 17th over to reduce Pakistan to 124-6.

Iftikhar hit two sixes off Thomas in the 18th over but was then dismissed caught behind off the last ball for a well-played 32 from 19 balls.

Shadab Khan brought up Pakistan’s 150 with a straight six off Dominic Drakes off the second ball of the 19th over.

Mohammad Wasim Jr was run out on the second to last ball of the innings for five.

Pakistan finished their 20 overs 172-8 with Mohammad Rizwan top-scoring with 38 and Iftikhar Ahmed getting 32.

Odean Smith and Akeal Hosein were the best performers for the West Indies with the ball with 2-24 from 3 overs and 1-16 from four overs, respectively.

The Amateur Swimming Association of Trinidad & Tobago and St. Lucia Aquatics Federation have both announced their respective teams for the FINA World Short-Course Swimming Championships to be held in Abu Dhabi from December 16-21.

Trinidad &Tobago will be represented Cherelle Thompson in the Women’s 50m Freestyle and 50m Butterfly; Dylan Carter in the Men’s 50m Freestyle, 50m Butterfly, 50m Backstroke, 100m Butterfly and 100m Freestyle while Nikoli Blackman will compete in the Men’s 400m Freestyle and 1500m Freestyle.

St. Lucia will have Jayhan Odlum-Smith in the Men’s 50m Butterfly and 100m Freestyle, Mikaili Charlemagne in the Women’s 50m Butterfly and 50m Freestyle, Naima Hazell in the Women’s 50 Breaststroke and 50m Backstroke and Terrel Monplaisir in the Men’s 50m Breaststroke and 50m Freestyle.

Interim Head Coach of the “Reggae Boyz,” Paul Hall, says his selection policy in the short term will be to pick the best players available as he aims to get Jamaica into the 2022 FIFA World Cup.

 The two teams that only got into the quarterfinal round of the Manning cup because Camperdown High and Tivoli Gardens were disqualified, won their opening matches of the Manning Cup quarter-finals.

Excelsior and STATHS had originally finished third and fourth in Group B of the Manning Cup preliminary round but advanced after Camperdown and Tivoli were disqualified from the tournament for using ineligible players.

STATHS won their Group 1 opener 4-1 over St. Catherine High on Friday while Excelsior High beat Kingston Technical 3-1 in their Group 2 opener on Saturday.

Jamaica College beat Mona High 2-0 in the other Group 1 match on Friday and Kingston College got by Charlie Smith 3-0 in the other Group 2 match on Saturday.

The quarter-final round of the DaCosta Cup also got underway on Saturday with Dinthill Technical blanking Christiana High 4-0. Meanwhile, Edwin Allen beat William Knibb 2-0 in the second Zone 1 game on the day.

Mannings were the only Zone 2 winners Saturday, beating Vere Technical 3-2.

Munro College, which have struggled for form played to a 1-1 draw with Happy Grove in the other Zone game on the day.

Munro entered that game on the back of two straight losses in their Zone C playoff games against Lacovia and B.B. Coke.

In Zone 3, Garvey Maceo continued their fantastic form this season by beating Frome 2-0 while STETHS easily got past St. Thomas Technical 6-1.

Elsewhere, defending champions Clarendon College and Manchester High got wins in Zone 4 action.

Clarendon College defeated Cornwall College 2-1 while Manchester High ran out 4-0 winners over McGrath High.

Quarterfinal action in both competitions resumes on Tuesday.

 

 

Olympic bronze medalist, Megan Tapper, credits her background in gymnastics for instilling her with her trademark fighting spirit.

Speaking on the latest episode of On Point published on Friday on the SportsMax TV YouTube channel, Tapper says her time in gymnastics helped her develop the mindset she now has when competing on the track.

“Determination and grit are things that were ingrained in me from my days in gymnastics."

During her time as a student at St. Andrew High School, Tapper spent several years as a gymnast before she transitioned to athletics.

She said the main thing she gained from the experience was to push through any adversity, a characteristic she has often displayed in competition.

“If I learned anything, it was to push through when the road is extremely rocky; when you can’t see the end when you have no energy left. It is to just continue pushing and never ever giving up,” said Tapper, who created history when she won the bronze medal in Tokyo in the 100m hurdles. She is the first female Caribbean sprint hurdler to win an Olympic medal in the event.

The full interview can be seen on the SportsMax TV YouTube channel and on the Sportsmax app.

Tokyo Olympics 100m bronze medalist, Megan Tapper, says her support team helped her find motivation after she fell in the final at the 2019 Doha World Championships.

The diminutive sprint hurdler, who won national titles in 2016 and again in 2021, had improved significantly during the season when she ran what was then a new lifetime best of 12.63. However, after getting to the final in Doha, she hit the first hurdle and fell.

Speaking on the latest episode of On Point on the SportsMax TV YouTube channel, Tapper elaborated on the emotions she experienced during that moment on the track.

“Just complete and utter devastation. It was unbelievable. I couldn’t believe that the opportunity that I trained so long and hard for ended in such devastation. There’s no other word that can basically describe that moment,” Tapper said.

Tapper says those emotions also stemmed from the fact that she was in great shape and ready for the race.

“I’ve never been ready, up to that moment, for a race, the way I was ready for that final and unfortunately I wasn’t able to finish the race,” she said.

In that moment, according to Tapper, she was unable to contain her emotions.

“The feeling was overwhelming. I wasn’t able to be the composed Megan that most of us know because the emotions were so raw and overwhelming,” said Tapper.

Afterwards, she said, she sought support from those close to her for support. 

“I reached out to the various people who were in my circle at the time and they would say to me 'don’t worry about it, this is just another roadblock. You are still Megan, you are still capable, anything is still possible for you, shake it off and let’s go again. Talking to my support team was how the motivation came back for me,” said Tapper.

The full interview can be seen on the SportsMax TV YouTube channel.

 

© 2022 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.